With the world of business becoming more agile, customer-centric and data-driven, a UX process methodology is perhaps one thing that nearly every business does but does differently in the UX industry. And businesses are staying at top of their customer service by having a smooth and engaging UX design. While there is no such thing as a pitch-perfect UX design & process, there are certainly some ground rules to ensure that your UX process adds to your company’s growth and thereby helps retain and attract users.
This post will, therefore, help you identify the pain points and experience process that is fruitful for the business.
UX is all about giving your customers the right experience at the right time and further anticipating those needs. But how to do that is where the UX methodology comes. We know that starting a project can be taxing especially if all you have is a rough idea in your mind. But don’t worry, a methodological UX process will therefore help you navigate through it all fairly smoothly.
It also involves knowing what your client wants and then gathering the right dataset with the right team to execute that tailored strategy – saving you time, energy, money and let’s not forget, the headache of a poorly created end product.
What is UX Methodology?
What is the objective, what is the client’s vision, what is the target audience, the budget, the time plan, who are the stakeholders? These are all questions that are part of our UX methodology. It involves undergoing a collaborative creative brief workshop with the client to specify the goals, put forth concerns and align the strategy accordingly. Because at the end of the day, it is all about putting forth something that not only looks great but feels great to interact with.
So follow our UX process guide to ensure a smooth-sailing customer experience:
The Kickoff Brief
First things first. You need to know what your client wants and you need to know how you are going fulfill their needs. This involves doing some preliminary research and coming up with hypothetical scenarios surrounding the target audience, the competition, stakeholders, project’s feasibility and viability – in terms of both time and budget. This ensures that the client knows how its product is appearing to the end-user and so leaves no room for ambiguity.
After having an introductory session with the client, the next bit involves undertaking research about the existing market dynamics and to delve deeper into the product itself. This makes sure that the UX experience is turning out to be as tailored and concise as possible. The brainstorming, therefore, helps in idea generation and helps to visualize various design solutions before agreeing on one.
Moreover, this stage also involves extracting as much detail about the industry landscape, product features and complexities to map out the customer and user journeys. Once all such information is gathered, it becomes easier to design mood boards and to start scheduling tasks in the UX design pipeline.
User-Journey Mapping and Mood Boards
This step involves going into the nitty-gritty of the scenarios that have risen out of the brainstorming and preliminary research stage. These ideas are then followed through and visually explored via mood boards. This allows for various types of artwork to be undertaken including typography, color palettes, overall aesthetic so that the user experience can be assessed from all aspects on multiple platforms. All of this helps to have ample knowledge foundation from which the sketching and prototyping can take place. Therefore, mood boards not only help to give the client an effective insight into what their product’s journey is coming out to be but also helps achieve a visual and tangible form that can be tested upon.
Wireframing & Prototyping
Once you have visually explored the ideas via mood boards, then comes the time to build the wireframe and the prototype. The prototype help refine the user journey, color scheme, and design elements. Having a couple of interactive prototypes ready for the client to provide feedback on just makes the process a lot simpler and manageable as opposed to the client providing critical feedback once the product has been designed. This then feeds into the user testing phase.
Now that the user’s journey has been drawn out, it is time to put it to the test and see if there’s any more room left for experimentation. Usability testing lies at the heart of a good UX design. It means testing your product against potential bottlenecks and checking it’s ease-of-use, interactive ability and functionality. The prototypes are tested against a single process or multiple ones to see what performs best. This also involves carrying out a competitor audit to see how your product is comparable to existing features out there. The goal is then to find out what works best for you and how to mold your strategy accordingly.
Remember though, this stage along with the prototype development, takes many iterations to get right as modifications are always there. This also helps to keep the user-journey on the forefront as it is vital that every part corresponds to a user-centric view. Moreover, undertaking usability tests enable for quick follow-ups and also helps to collect, prioritize and present the analysis in a report form. Once your product has passed all these stages, it is always good to maintain a follow-up. This ensures that the client is always in the loop and any such concerns can, therefore, be proactively addressed.
So there you have it, this is the UX process here at ReloadUX. Though we understand that a UX methodology can never be static and varies from product to product, it’s always good to have a framework to work with. Having a clear UX process prior to development will not only save you resources, but it will also ensure that the entire strategy is from a customer-centric view – making the UX experience all the richer and better.
Design therefore is one of the tools whereby you can outsmart your competitors and knowing how to integrate user research with strategy and design is the way to go about it.